Put your dog in the crate using your regular command and a treat. Initially, it may be a good idea to put the crate in your bedroom or nearby in a hallway, especially if you have a puppy. Puppies often need to go outside to eliminate during the night, and you’ll want to be able to hear your puppy when they whine to be let outside. Older dogs, too, should initially be kept nearby so they don’t associate the crate with social isolation.
According to official CIA documents, the dogs on the K-9 team are “just like all of the CIA’s best employees: enthusiastic, hard working, loyal, and dedicated.” They’re also highly trained by CIA handlers.
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If your dog’s crate is his refuge, it emphatically is not his prison. The crate should never be used for punishment or prolonged confinement to make your own life easier. Dog ownership is big work, and the crate is not a handy place to tuck him when he gets in the way. He loves you unconditionally, and crating him for punishment or convenience is confusing to him, and potentially harmful to his physical and mental well-being.
A crate for use at home can be larger than one used for travel. Crates used for international transport should adhere to international regulations stipulated by IATA. If the crate is too big the pet will be able to use one end for rest and sleep while using the other as a toilet, which will undermine one of the purposes of crate training.
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Any info on this behavior is great. PS. She doesn’t want dogs, but her daughter in with them. I love animals and tell her to play with the dogs and be warm and friendly, gaining the trust of the animal.
There are several contact obstacles, including the A-frame, the teeter-totter, and the dog walk. The A-frame is a teepee shaped walkway. Dogs must be able to walk up the steep incline and back down the other side. The dog walk works like a balance beam for dogs with ramps on either end. And the teeter-totter is just like one you would find at the playground. Your dog must learn to walk across it as it moves under his weight.
Mark, I have a 10 yr old playful yellow lab and a newly acquired 6 mo golden retriever. The lab has never been crated, but has been kenneled when we traveled. I am not sure about the new pup as she is a rescue. How would you suggest we do crate training? Do we do it for just the pup or start crating both of them. We have a doggie door which allows them to play and eliminate outside. House is very much puppy/lab proofed (as our lab stopped being a puppy only 4 years ago!). Thanks for your response.
Start by lining it with blankets and place a few toys inside to make it cozy. You can also cover it with a lightweight blanket to mimic a “den” environment. Make sure it is still ventilated and not too hot if you do this.
We’re doing our best to create a schedule that will limit the amount of time our pup will be home alone and have got it down to 4 hours at the max on the longest days – not too bad for both of us working full-time. However, this is still a long time for an 8-12 week old puppy. We would like to crate her while we are away, but we’re entertaining the idea of the crate attached to a pen – just don’t know what to put down on the floor underneath it (our house is all carpet). Any suggestions? Also, I know you said to put some kind of bedding in the crate, but if we are still working on potty training, what do you recommend? We want to avoid the potty pads, as I’ve also heard that they can delay the process by providing an alternative to going outdoors.
I have a 6 year old wheaten terrier and she did wonderfully with crate training as a puppy. She has had free roam of the house since she was about 2. Since moving to a new house 2 years ago, she has occasionally urinated in the house during the workday and I always blamed it on not being able to make it home to let her out at lunch. She has now started urinating in the house during the day pretty frequently regardless of exercise, potty breaks, etc, and I have a feeling it has to do with the fact that I am pregnant- currently 7 months along. We decided to reintroduce her crate and she has adapted right back to it with no issues. However, I don’t want to crate her again for the rest of her life. How would you suggest we proceed? My ultimate goal is for her to have free roam of the house again, anytime we are gone. Thanks in advance for any advice!
I recommend placing the crate in an area of the house where both you and the dog can access it easily. The crate should be close enough to be handy, but out of the way enough that it is not going to be tripped over constantly. I usually place a crate right beside my bed; it helps teach puppies to sleep in the crate if you are right beside them and they don’t feel so alone. I place another crate in a corner of my living room.
You can start with Potty pads if you plan on keeping the pup crated at night. You will have a crate large enough to have a separate area for the pads. You can also take him outside after meals so he can go to the bathroom, this will also help in potty training and house breaking.
Be certain that your puppy has fully eliminated shortly before being crated. Be sure that the crate you are using is not too large to discourage your pup from eliminating in it. Rarely does a pup or dog eliminate in the crate if it is properly sized and the dog is an appropriate age to be crated a given amount of time. If your pup/dog continues to eliminate in the crate, the following may be the causes:
Providing your puppy or dog with an indoor kennel crate can satisfy many dogs’ need for a den-like enclosure. Besides being an effective housebreaking tool (because it takes advantage of the dog’s natural reluctance to soil its sleeping place), it can also help to reduce separation anxiety, to prevent destructive behavior (such as chewing furniture), to keep a puppy away from potentially dangerous household items (i.e., poisons, electrical wires, etc.), and to serve as a mobile indoor dog house which can be moved from room to room whenever necessary.
Your average adult dog will resist being crated more than a puppy will. A puppy has no habits or a way of life it’s used to and is learning how to live from anew. Making a crate a part of this is relatively easy. But an adult dog who’s spent perhaps years without ever being in a crate? You’re going to have to completely change life-long habits and introduce new behaviors. They may fight this to begin with.
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Coursework for teams who are competing at the Novice / Starters level in any venue. Dogs in competition classes are expected to be able to do 12 upright weave poles and have a defined contact behavior.
In the early stages of crate training, if they’re making a fuss, calmly reassure your puppy until they’re calm and quiet and only then release them. You should probably go back a few steps in the training.
Some dogs initially dislike the crate and require careful training to be happy spending time in there which can take time and patience. There aren’t really shortcuts. Until that time, you should try to set up a confinement area your puppy can spend time within instead. A completely puppy-proofed room, with everything and anything he could potentially destroy well out of reach. A laundry room, unused spare room, or a large puppy play pen are usually used for this purpose.
Treating a dog in a humanized manner is perhaps the cardinal sin dog lovers commit. Love your dog, but do not treat him as a baby. Only dogs that understand their role within a family unit are actually trainable. Upset the role identification, and problems are sure to ensue.
Thanks for finally writing on this topic, I really liked it and will follow the advice. I read the articles in the rest of the series and have been waiting for instructions to start crate training my Lab puppy. My Stella chews everything! Like EVERYTHING at home! We will not crate her often, but just to help break the chewing habit as it’s getting expensive. She’s so lovely and not at all badly behaved just chews a lot when we’re not watching. This should really help.
He is very good at asking out day and night (he is from my nephews litter and they have all been very good at toileting from around 6wks which is really helpful) but with him being so against the door being closed – which I am going to work on using your plan – I wondered if an alarm might assist in this.
When your dog is being crate trained, keeping him on a good schedule is critical. He should be taken our regularly and given the chance to eliminate in his potty area. To get an idea of how frequently he’ll need a potty trip, refer to the chart below. Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and you may find that your dog needs to be taken out more or less frequently.
i have a 12 year sheltie who is recovering from 10/11 months of walking pneumonia. she just spent one month at an emergency hospital so we have to keep her quiet so she can regain her strength and stamina. the problem is that she’s a party girl. loves to socialize at night and is restless, probably because she has what they call in chinese medicine, a kidney yin deficiency.
If your lifestyle does not allow for a long-term approach to crate training, consider an abridged method you can undertake over the course of a weekend. Before starting, remember the two ideas of gradual training (even in the abridged version), and above all, patience.